Notebook: No Kampman, Tauscher

Aaron Kampman hasn't even been in the weight room this week, much less practiced; Jordy Nelson looks ready to return; updated injury reports; plus more from Thursday.

Going into what amounts to a must-win game, Green Bay Packers coach Mike McCarthy struck a pessimistic chord on Thursday about the status of Aaron Kampman and Mark Tauscher.

Kampman, who played through most of last week's game at Tampa Bay with a concussion, hasn't passed the cognitive tests that would allow him to get back on the practice field — much less play on Sunday against Dallas.

"Until he completes that process, he will not be on the football field," McCarthy said. "He's further away than you might think. We're always going to err on the high side with our players. I think we've done that in Ted (Thompson's) time here and my time here. Until he completes the different tests, there's a point where you want to get back on the practice field. He hasn't worked out in the weight room yet, so that tells you where he is."

Without Kampman, the first choice to replace him would be Brady Poppinga, but he hasn't practiced this week, either. That means rookie seventh-round pick Brad Jones is in line to make his first start. He hasn't played a snap in the base defense this season.

"Brady Poppinga has some unusual swelling in his leg, but his range of motion and everything is fine, so they're just being safe with him," McCarthy said. "He will see Dr. McKenzie again in the morning, and his practice participation will be determined then. I really don't know if he's going to be able to go or not. If you talked to Brady, he'd tell you he's ready to go."

Meanwhile, rookie T.J. Lang continues to take the work at right tackle. Tauscher, who sprained his left knee in the third quarter at Tampa Bay, hasn't practiced this week.

"Mark feels good," McCarthy said. "Just like anytime a player comes back off an injury, the last hurdle is clearance from the medical staff. He'll see Dr. (Pat) McKenzie again in the morning. I had a chance to visit with Mark before his workout down on the field in the Hutson Center. He feels really good about it, the swelling and so forth. Obviously he has history here and has history with knee injuries, so I think he's pretty much in tune with his body. A longshot this week, but I think he'll definitely be ready next week."

But some good news

Receiver Jordy Nelson was a full participant at practice for the first time since suffering a knee sprain while fielding his muffed punt against Detroit on Oct. 18.

"It (stinks). Any injury (stinks)," Nelson said. "This is the biggest injury I've ever had, so it's difficult but it's part of the game."

It's been a frustrating few weeks for Nelson, who was emerging as more of a threat on offense while returning kickoffs and punts. In Nelson's absence, the Packers are 1-2, the offense has sputtered the last two weeks and the return game hasn't produced.

"We just need to play fourth quarters," he said. "Besides last week, we've done a good job of not turning the ball over. Continue to do that and play four quarters. We know we can move the ball. We've just got to do it the whole game and when we get in the red zone, score (touchdowns)."

Packers injury report

Did not participate — LB Brandon Chillar (hand); TE Jermichael Finley (knee); LB Aaron Kampman (concussion); LB Brady Poppinga (quad); T Mark Tauscher (knee). Limited participation — DE Cullen Jenkins (ankle). Full participation — WR Jake Allen (quad); T Allen Barbre (concussion); FB Korey Hall (calf); S Derrick Martin (concussion); WR Jordy Nelson (knee); QB Aaron Rodgers (feet); CB Charles Woodson (hip).

Nelson, Rodgers, Barbre and Woodson went from limited participation to full. Meanwhile, left tackle Chad Clifton isn't on the injured list for the first time since spraining an ankle for the first time in Week 2 against Cincinnati.

"He looked pretty damned good the last two days," offensive line coach James Campen said.

Cowboys injury report

Did not participate — CB Allen Rossum (hamstring). Limited participation — C Andre Gurode (ankle); S Ken Hamlin (groin). Full participation — RB Marion Barber (thumb); S Gerald Sensabaugh (thumb); LB DeMarcus Ware (foot).

Four-point stance

— Dallas has won this matchup the last two years, giving it a 12-10 edge in the regular-season series.

— The Packers are one of five teams that rank in the top 10 in the league in offense and defense. The others are Indianapolis (8-0), Pittsburgh (6-2), New England (6-2) and the New York Giants (5-4).

— With James Jones' 74-yard touchdown reception last week highlighting his 103-yard performance, the Packers are the first team with four players producing 100-receiving-yard games this season. He joins Greg Jennings (twice), Donald Driver and Jermichael Finley.

— A March poll produced by the NFL and ESPN showed that Dallas is the country's most popular sports franchise. Green Bay ranks second, followed by Pittsburgh, New England and baseball's New York Yankees.

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Bill Huber is publisher of Packer Report magazine and and has written for Packer Report since 1997. E-mail him at, or leave him a question in Packer Report's subscribers-only Packers Pro Club forum. Find Bill on Twitter at and Facebook under Bill Huber.

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